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Oakland teachers on strike after no deal is reached with school district

3 mins read

The Oakland Education Association will push through with its strike starting Thursday, the Oakland Unified School District confirms. 

OUSD said the strike will go through “despite great progress in negotiations.”

“OUSD has failed to come to the table in good faith,” OEA said. “Educators will be on the picket line tomorrow, on strike for our students & for Oakland schools. Join us on the picket line. We will continue to negotiate in good faith & hope the district does the same.”

Schools will be open on Thursday, but teachers will not be in classrooms. OUSD said they don’t know how long the strike will last. 

“The end of the school year is always filled with milestone events for our students, so we want to ensure regular school resumes as soon as possible,” OUSD said.

OUSD officials state they have a news conference on Thursday morning to “discuss the strike, the impact it will have on Oakland’s young people, and the reasons behind it.” 

Board of Education President Mike Hutchinson and Superintendent Dr. Kyla Johnson-Trammell will lead the leadership team.

The event is scheduled at 10:30 a.m. at the district office in suite 150, 1000 Broadway in Oakland.

This Thursday will not be a typical day as students and families are told to expect picket lines at schools. Central office staff will be present to ensure safety, and principals will be given instructions. 

About 3,000 teachers are expected to participate.

OUSD put together this document for information about the strike in several languages.

The OEA has expressed frustration with negotiations, saying they have been “marked by management’s continual meeting cancelations, non-serious offers and the presence of district negotiators lacking authority to make decisions.”

Oakland teachers receive the lowest pay in the Bay Area and have been working without a contract since November, according to OEA. 

Teachers demand a livable wage, improved services for students with disabilities, additional mental health support for students recovering from the COVID pandemic, and investment in Historically Black Community Schools.

District officials, serving over 34,000 students, said they couldn’t predict how long the strike would last, but negotiations with the teachers union would continue. 

The district announcement included: “No one from OUSD will be available for comment before the press conference.”

The district announced the strike at about 9 p.m. Wednesday, and it was confirmed within the hour by the Oakland Education Association on social media.

Charlene

Charlene is a Bay Area journalist who hails from the small community of Fresno. Drawing from her experience writing for her college paper, Charlene continues to advocate for free press and local journalism. She also volunteers in all the beach cleanups she can because she loves the water.

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